Rediscovering Nice, France

Nice's Place Massina at night

After just a few years absence, I was longing to return to Nice, France. I have always loved the festive atmosphere in Nice, no matter the season. Our last visit to Nice for a conference was in March and the city seemed fresh and ready for summer, which was right around the corner. This time we visited in early September and summer was not ready to give way to fall. The days were comfortably hot ... Read Full Article

My Date with Picasso in Vauvenargues, Provence


Vauvenargues is a small French village strung out like washing on a line along the valley lying parallel to the north side of Mont Ste-Victoire. Its “main road” has front doors of stone houses opening right onto the street; the café tables along its length leave little room for vehicles. Across the valley from the village is a fairytale chateau haloed by the sun and perched on a rock among the ... Read Full Article

Frugal Guide to Fantastic Nice, France


The moment you step onto the Promenade des Anglais and witness the vista of aquamarine sea, white foam, striped umbrellas, and the surrounding leafy green hills, you will immediately understand the appeal Nice has had for centuries. Yes, there are the charming, winding narrow streets of the Old Town and the boutiques, the daily markets, and patisserie—but the view from the boardwalk of Nice is a ... Read Full Article

Aix en Provence France: Cézanne’s Home


  Aix en Provence, a beautiful old Roman town, was built on the ruins of Entremont in the year 122 B.C. The area had hot and cold springs and was thus named Aquae Sextiae. In the Middle Ages, after it was abandoned by the Romans, Aix became the center of trade in the region and the home of the Sovereign Counts of Provence. Today, with a population of 137,000 (including 40,000 university ... Read Full Article

Shop the Markets of Provence and the Cote d’Azur

Nice Market in Summer

When in Provence, checking out the many street markets is a must. While in France we build our sightseeing around the markets. We get to the town early, visit the market and spend the rest of the day visiting the sights. The vendors at these markets are friendly and most will speak at least a little English. If not, you can use hand gestures to let them know what you want and how much. It ... Read Full Article

Inspiration in the South of France

Monaco Casino at night

There is nowhere like the South of France; the warm sun and the Mediterranean Sea influence everything: the food, the wine, the architecture and the way of life. After Paris, the south is France's most popular vacation destination for foreign visitors and the French themselves. Although agriculture has been the mainstay in the economy for years, high-tech industries have sprung up near Nice ... Read Full Article